Of all the questions we get, one of the most common ones is, how much does it cost to move out of state? Unfortunately, we don’t have a clear-cut answer.
You see, a lot of factors go into moving. For instance, the cost of moving into a studio apartment just across the state border will likely cost way less than the cost of moving the contents of a five-bedroom home three states away.
While we can’t necessarily give you a solid answer without knowing your circumstances, we can give you some insight into the factors that determine the cost of moving out of state. As you begin to familiarize yourself with what you need to budget for during your move, you’ll have an easier time calculating the average cost of moving out of state based on your particular scenario.
Follow our guide to help you estimate what it might cost you to pack up and move another state or two over.
Factors That Impact Moving Costs
If we can impart one piece of advice on you, it’s to estimate your costs and create a budget before you make your big move. If you’re not careful, you can very easily wrack up some hefty fees. But if you know what to expect and what to budget for, your move will have much less of a financial impact on you.
So, where do you begin? Consider some of the following factors when preparing for your move.
One major contributing cost of your move involves just how far you’re traveling. Are you moving just 30 minutes away across state lines? Perhaps that’s only a 30- to 45-mile trip. But if you’re moving across several states, that could be anywhere from 150 to 500 miles or more.
Obviously, the further you’re traveling, the more expensive your trip will be, regardless of whether you hire help or do it yourself. Mileage is one of the main factors professional services will consider when providing you with a cost estimate. But even if you’re going at it alone, you’ll still need to consider the cost of gas and any stops along the way. For instance, if you’re breaking up your move into a multi-day journey, you’ll likely need to factor in the cost of renting a hotel and buying meals, too.
The weight of your belongings is another main price factor to consider when calculating the cost of moving to another state. As you might assume, the more you have, the more it’ll cost you.
Many moving companies offer price estimates based on the weight of your belongings. To calculate the weight, some companies determine that the contents of one room weigh roughly 2,000 pounds. So, if you have a four-bedroom home, you can assume you have around 8,000 pounds of items to move.
Knowing this can help you determine what size vehicle you’ll need for your move and what it might cost you. If you have less than 2,000 pounds of belongings, maybe you’ll only need a small trailer, but a large truck may be a better fit if you have a lot more items than that.
Method of Transportation
Once you’ve estimated how far you’re traveling and how much stuff you’re moving, you can decide how you plan to physically move it to your final destination.
For one, do you want to move your belongings by yourself? If that’s the case, what do you plan to move them in? Do you already drive a large van that will accommodate all your stuff? Or do you need to ask a friend for a lift?
(If you ask your friend, you’ll want to cover not only the cost of gas but also their snacks, meals, and beverages during the move.)
Renting a moving truck or trailer is another option. The price of doing so may vary, so you’ll definitely want to shop around. This will likely cost more than driving your own vehicle, but it is still less expensive than hiring professionals to do it for you.
That said, hiring a professional moving truck service certainly has its perks. Yes, you’re paying for the labor it takes to move your belongings onto the truck and transport them to another state (along with other fees associated with the space on the vehicle, moving materials, and gas), but this can also remove a lot of the hassle and stress out of doing it yourself.
You also won’t have to worry about loading and unloading your items or driving a big truck on potentially unfamiliar roads. Depending on your individual circumstances, hiring a professional moving service may be worth the extra costs.
In addition to hiring a professional moving service for your move, there are other services you might look into as well.
For example, did you know you can hire professional packers to pack up all your belongings? These packers will go room by room, packing up your belongings in boxes and labeling each one. While this certainly is not necessary, many people like to hire these professionals so they can focus on other aspects of their move. If you do plan to go this route, be sure to budget this service into the cost of moving out of state, as you’ll pay an hourly rate on top of the price of their moving supplies.
Renting a storage unit is another professional service you might need to consider. For instance, you might find that you need a place to store your belongings because your new home is not ready to move into yet. Or perhaps your next home doesn’t have a garage, so you need to store your lawn equipment somewhere until you get around to selling it. Again, renting a storage unit can certainly make your move easier, but it is another service you’ll need to write into your budget.
Now that your boxes are all on the moving truck, no more spending money, right?
Not so fast. You don’t want to leave your empty home a mess for the next residents. Unless you don’t mind scrubbing the floors and vacuuming all those nooks and crannies, it might be a good idea to hire a professional cleaning service. Many of these services charge a flat hourly rate, so the price will depend on how big your space is and how long it takes them to deep clean it.
How To Reduce the Costs of Your Move
As you review our guide to calculating the price of your move, you’re probably wondering if there’s any way you can cut down on costs. Check out some of these tips for a more budget-friendly move:
As convenient as it is to hire someone else to make the move for you, obviously, you’re going to need to fork out the costs to cover such luxuries. If you’re concerned about the cost of your move, see how you can cut corners and do things yourself.
Can you ask your friends and family to help you pack up your belongings with you so that you don’t have to hire packers? Or can you borrow your brother’s pick-up truck instead of renting a moving van? And maybe you can even bribe your kids into dusting and vacuuming after you pack up each room.
In short, doing it yourself is definitely a possibility, but just be sure to pack extra time into your schedule to accommodate these tasks.
Sort Out Your Belongings
Do you really need to transport that box of books you haven’t opened in 12 years? And what about all your grown kids’ baby clothes? The more you can toss or donate, the less room you’ll need to pay for during your move.
Do a good sort-out of all your items and be honest with yourself about what you really need to hold on to. You can even go the Marie Kondo avenue, asking yourself, “Does this item spark joy?”
If it doesn’t spark joy, there’s no need to lug it to the next state with you.
Keep Your Budget In Mind
Think about cutting costs during your actual move across the state, too. Rather than stopping at a four-star restaurant for lunch, what if you packed some sandwiches instead? And instead of staying at a fancy hotel, it’d be much more affordable to stay at a motel for the night. Simply being aware of some of these extra moving costs can help you keep your budget in check.
Turn To Stor-It
If you still have questions about the cost of moving out of state, turn to us here at Stor-It. We’re the largest and oldest storage company in Idaho, so we’re the experts on all kinds of moving and storage topics. Contact us today to find out more about moving tips for homeowners, storage solutions, and so much more!